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Paradigm PC Review

Paradigm is a point and click adventure game from Australian developer Jacob Janerka. It was crowdfunded on Kickstarter back in 2014 and has just been released. Janerka is relatively unknown in the gaming world but since the release of this game that has quickly changed. With Paradigm, he has bought a resurgence back to point and click adventure games.

Gameplay

You play as Paradigm a mutated humanoid who dreams of becoming the best electronic musician with his “Phat Beatsies”. However, his past is catching up with him and he must traverse his home town of Krusz set in a dystopian Eastern European Neo Soviet world. As he travels around he will meet an arrange of strange and memorable characters such as a glam metal cult leader pug, menacing watercooler’s and a Trump wig wearing sloth who vomits candy bars. All these characters and more add to the humor and absurdity of this game.

Interacting with the environment is standard compared to other games in the genre. Using items, you collect and talking to characters to get deeper into the game.

It’s worth using odd combinations in this game just to hear the hilarious quips of Paradigm. Such as selecting “pick up” on certain items will make him flirt terribly with objects and characters.  Janerka has obviously played a lot of adventure games and knows some of the outrageous combinations people come up with, so has included a response for them all.

Also, hidden inside this game are many bonuses such as a game that can be played once you pick up a pocket organizer. It is here I found the best game ever made, a post-apocalyptic dating simulator. Encouraged to flirt and seduce three characters a duck-man mutant hybrid, a mutated man with long spaghetti arms and of course the new love of my life, a toaster! Completely unnecessary to the main storyline of the game; this bonus comes as a welcome surprise and follows the same humor as the main game.

Paradigm has many Easter eggs referencing other games in the genre with familiar icons popping up all over the place. Such as a glam metal nun sporting a Grim Fandango tattoo (because nothing is more metal than that), again this just shows Janerka’s love for the genre and his many influences.

Graphics

The graphics of Paradigm are quite cartoony and well designed. It is often the case with many point and clicks, which works brilliantly for this game. The style is inspired by sci-fi apocalyptic and dystopian media and references the 70’s and 80’s culture.

The details in the scenes will have you finding something you didn’t see previously and laughing at nods to other games in the genre or game development.

Sound

The sound in this game also makes the game. You can pick up audio tapes to play on your pocket organizer, it is here I found the forgotten genre of music “Belly Slappin’” or the classic “Human Sounds for Whales Relaxation”, again completely unnecessary to the games story but worth the 1 minute of listening.

The sound for the game was done by Jonas Kjellberg, who does a brilliant job at creating these extra tracks and sound for the game, beautifully aligned with the main story.

Voice acting is brilliant in this game, with a range of accents bringing the characters to life making them all memorable even if they are only in the game for a short time. I never found myself skipping dialogue and wanted to hear everything the characters had to say just to hear them say something outrageous.

Conclusion

I can’t praise this game enough. As a big fan of click and point adventure games, Paradigm brings a fresh and absurd spin to the genre; and yet feels like an instant classic. Even if you are not a fan of the genre I would recommend this game for its dark and twisted humor alone. At only about six hours long and $15 USD it was worth every cent. Jacob Janerka certainly has future in game development and I can’t wait to see what he comes up with next. I only hope it is another adventure game or even a toaster dating simulator. If it has the same absurd humor and phat beatsies I am sure he has a bright future in the game development.

 

Pros:

  • Absurd humor
  • Memorable characters
  • Fresh feel to a classic genre

Cons:

  • Some of the puzzles are a bit easy

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